Could EI dosing be killing my fish - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 12:22 PM Thread Starter
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Could EI dosing be killing my fish

I've been having a die off lately that I am completely stumped by.

It started with my glowlight danios and has now moved onto my school of neon tetras. They show no signs of illness, then within an hour of labored breathing, they die.

I dose EI using these....

NilocG Aquatics | Liquid NPK+M | 500ml Bottles | Highly Concentrated Aquarium Plant Fertilizer for Demanding Planted Tanks https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VIO6LCI..._eVPqEbMDJ8RCF

Is there any chance that full dosing on these (5 pumps alternating products daily on a 60 gallon tank) could be poisoning these little fish?

I have 50 cherry shrimp in there along with some dwarf gouramis that all are doing fine.

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 12:41 PM
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Unlikely, have you tested for anything? Do you do 50% water changes per week?


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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 01:28 PM
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Honestly, your shrimp would probably die first if it was co2 or ferts.

Did you add any plants or fish recently that could have brought in an illness?

I would do a 50% water change twice in one week if it was me and study the dead fish for illness.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Yes. 50% water change is done every week on Sunday. All water parameters are good. I dose CO2. Drop Checker is always green at one bubble per second.

Ammonia, and nitrite are always at zero and I've been checking every other day since the started. PH is a little high at 7.8, But it comes out of the tap at almost 8. Temperature is kept A little on the cool side at 73 74 degrees.

The fish always look healthy and active until right before they start gasping and Drop Like a Stone. I'm really dumbfounded by it.

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 01:38 PM
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If they're going to the surface and gasping it sounds like too much co2, but your only getting a .2 drop in PH, most shoot for a 1.0 drop.

Edit: Within an hour, yeah that sounds like a co2 issue. Something is off


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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 03:22 PM Thread Starter
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I agree something is off!

But at 1/BS in a 60 gallon tank, I just don't see that being an issue. Checker is green. I even swapped fluid last water change to ensure accuracy.

The fish are in the tank about a month. I don't see any obvious signs of infection or stress on the live fish or the corpses.

The only thing I've changed, is that I added a sponge pre filter to the intake of my canister to keep the shrimp from getting sucked up. (I found like 20 of them in there last clean out). The pre filter is from Tetra and is made for pond intakes. I doubt that would be poisoning them though.

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 03:32 PM
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Right so the co2 not being a problem makes sense at 1 bps, since your only getting a small drop in ph. You said within the hour, are you talking about new fish your putting in? Fish gasp for what other not enough o2 in the water.


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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 03:53 PM
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I would think if 1bps is keeping a drop checker green in a 60g tank there must be very very little gaseous exchange happening and so o2 may be severely limited?. Most people report much higher rates of injection including myself on my 45g you could never count the bps it's flowing so fast to keep the dropchecker in the green and I'm not running airstones or a air pump of any kind. So what is the rest of your setup like? Filters, airpump? Co2 setup? Would you say you have good surface agitation or none at all?

I'm stumped a bit on the 1bps and a .2 ph drop turning the dropchecker green. On my tank a .2 ph drop my dropchecker would be firmly blue. I'm dropping 1.0-1.2 to have my drop checker green.

45g fluval bowfront tank, plant 2.0 light, 2 x 206 canister filters, 5lb co2 art pro se
10g quarantine tank

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 04:13 PM
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Just in case it is some kind of toxin, start by adding some activated charcoal or purigen to give you some time while you figure out the cause.

How many episodes have you had where the fish died like this? How far apart were they? Is there a chance someone has been spraying air freshener or that someone other than you might have accidentally done something to the tank or spilled something on your equipment? Since the prefilter is the only new thing you've added, try rinsing it very thoroughly under running tap water just in case.

Also, is this happening shortly before or after your water changes? If it's happening within a day of a water change, it's possible your water company has added something or there's some kind of contaminate in the water supply. You can look up your city's water report online.

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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So I have a 10lb cylinder. I have the airline coming from my bubble counter and strapped to the intake of my canister filter. Bubbles just burb out of the airline and get sucked into my intake. No micro-bubbles come out of the return.

I do run it 24/7. But my checker is never yellow in the morning. My tank is not what you'd call heavily planted, but it's not lightly planted either.

If I stop co2 injection, checker is solid blue in an hour or so.

Surface agitation isn't extreme, but I push up ripples with the return of canister filter. I don't use an air stone or anything like that.

When I say 60 gallon tank...its a rimless cube. 24x24x24. I haven't found a single dead shrimp this whole time FWIW

I run charcoal all the time, but only change it once every couple of months or so. It's been about two months since I changed it.

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantStudent View Post
They show no signs of illness, then within an hour of labored breathing, they die.
.
What does this mean? when does the labored breathing start? Are these new fish your putting in?


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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 06:33 PM
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Try moving your co2 checker around. Parts of the tank arent always even with co2. And I wouldnt run it at night, id get a timer for a few bucks and have it offset to 30 minutes before your lights turn on and shut off.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 07:06 PM Thread Starter
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To be honest I haven't timed labored breathing to death exactly. I know it's less than a day though. Generally from the time I notice til they are dead is about an hour.

It's only been one fish at a time. One of them is struggling, but all the others are fine. I've never seen more than one of them displaying issues at once.

The danios are about a month in my tank and the neon tetras are about a week in. The danios starting having issues before I added the tetras (2 died), but I thought it was a fluke. Now I'm going on 7 fish in the last 10 days.

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantStudent View Post
I have the airline coming from my bubble counter and strapped to the intake of my canister filter. Bubbles just burb out of the airline and get sucked into my intake. No micro-bubbles come out of the return.
------------
I don't use an air stone or anything like that.
You have your co2 going right into your canister filter intake??? That's not exactly a stable good idea, not only can it kill your filter bacteria it can stop the motor from pumping water for random amounts of time with it gets a pocket, which also means you cant tell how stable the co2 is getting into the water. Maybe I'm wrong but I think that's not a good idea. I honestly believe that might be screwing you over, especially without a air stone and with no positive ammonia or nitrite tests. You also could be killing the bacteria randomly with the co2 pockets in the filter, which would cause spikes, of which you may not be catching in time in the tests.

All in all I would shut down co2, add air stone and find a new solution for co2 diffusion.

Your co2 levels are probably whipping around but the drop test will only find the average, it wont tell you if your spiking unless you test the ph drop on the spot.


Edit: The proper way is to use a reactor or a inline co2 diffuser on the outlet on the canister filter, not intake.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 10:05 PM
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I agree with the above.

Gas lock in canister randomly stopping flow and causing anoxic conditions in canister which suffocates bacteria and also stops aeration/circulation in tank itself.

You d be better just using a upside down jar as a co2 bell until you can get a real solution.

Co2 shouldn’t run 24/7 under any circumstances.
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